5 risks to be aware of when moving furniture


South Africans are on the move! More and more people are semigrating to the sea, which shows in the booming coastal property market.

While it is an exciting prospect to be moving close to the coast and to have the opportunity to start fresh in a new location that offers the luxury of after-work beach walks, the move itself can be highly stressful and tough on your bank balance. 

Make your move safe and successful by choosing the right furniture removal company and taking out sufficient transit insurance to protect your belongings while they are on route to their new home. Here’s what you need to know: 

Be aware of the risks: The furniture removals industry is known for its high-risk nature, as movers often handle items that are fragile or delicate. Common relocation risks include accidental damage, theft, collision damage, hijacking, fire in the vehicle, vehicle overturning, storm damage, riot and strike action, and storage cover. 

Read the T&Cs: Being aware of the restrictions and conditions of coverage offered by larger removal companies is imperative. For example, some companies may only cover items that they pack themselves. Read the fine print to make sure you know what is and isn’t covered. Also, be aware of excess fees and how they are applied, avoid per item excesses and only accept a “per incident” excess. You also need to be careful about not signing away your rights to claim against removal companies in cases of gross negligence, warns Indwe Risk Services.

Know the value of your belongings: Valuations and inventories are critical elements of your coverage. Antiques, paintings and rugs, for example, may be difficult to replace and often hold sentimental value. Obtain a valuation or estimate of the cost to replace or repair these items. Also check that the removal inventory matches as closely as possible to the insured inventory. 

Be specific about where your furniture is going: If your goods are going to be held temporarily in storage, it is important to notify your current insurers of this fact, so they are aware of it if any loss or damage occurs whilst in storage and they will entertain any claims.

Do some homework: While many people opt for the cover provided by removal companies, it is worth noting that standalone cover may be less expensive. Removal companies also have a vested interest in reducing claims as it counts against their claims experience, and this could impact their willingness to pay out on a policy.